RCMP investigating Port Alberni's 2nd murder of 2021
Published Thursday, May 6, 2021 7:56AM PDT Last Updated Thursday, May 6, 2021 4:08PM PDT
VICTORIA -- Homicide investigators were combing through a Port Alberni apartment building Thursday, looking for evidence in the city’s latest murder.
The RCMP were notified of the death in the 3200-block of 3rd Avenue on Tuesday.
On Thursday, investigators could be seen photographing and tagging items inside the apartment.
Police say they believe the body had been in the apartment for some time before it was discovered.
A neighbour tells CTV News there had been a smell of decomposition in the building for several days.
“We were actually smelling a very foul smell for about a week,” Catelyn McLeod said Thursday. “It was very foul and it was getting stronger by the day.”
McLeod said neighbours had been talking and trying to figure out the source of the odour, which they determined was strongest on the building’s top floor, where the body was eventually found.
“I live on the bottom floor so it wasn’t as bad,” McLeod said. “Even the neighbour next door smelled it when he was mowing his lawn.”
McLeod said the tenants in the suite where the body was found had only lived in the building for a short time.
The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit is still working with the coroner to identify the victim.
“Currently, positive identification has not yet been established,” said Port Alberni RCMP detachment commander Insp. Eric Rochette in a statement Wednesday evening.
The body was discovered just over a month since another murder victim was found on a Port Alberni sidewalk.
Police identified the victim as a 20-year-old man from the Port Alberni and Ahousaht areas. Police said the man was found with stab wounds on his chest.
The Ahousaht First Nation identified the victim as Clifton Johnston, an Ahousaht nation member who called several other B.C. communities home, including Abbotsford.
Investigators are asking anyone with information about either death to contact the Port Alberni RCMP at 250-723-2424.